Junk Mail Burning


Installation, Bonfire, and Burning at New Capital Projects, East Garfield Park, Chicago.

Barbara Hashimoto created an interactive installation utilizing approximately half of the 3,000 cubic-feet of shredded junk mail which was amassed during the initial year of her ongoing environmental art project, THE JUNK MAIL EXPERIMENT. The shreds were then burned in a manner reminiscent of the Dondoyaki Ritual Burnings the artist experienced during her seven-year tenure in Japan.

In Dondoyaki, participants burn old amulets, unwanted clothing, calligraphy, and holiday decorations in a communal fire to mark the beginning of a new year cycle and to cleanse themselves of evil or unwanted spirits. Usually held at local shrines, neighbors gather around the flames sharing warm drinks and food. The ashes from Dundoyaki are often used to fertilize next year’s crops. Hashimoto’s Junk Mail Ashes will be incorporated into a future work and exhibitions.

A message from the artist
You are invited to participate, bring wood for the bonfire and objects to burn. I will begin building an installation at 12 noon with several trips from my downtown studio to transport the shreds to the burn site at New Capital. I expect to offer dinks and food and encourage everyone to join in the communal spirit suggested by Dondoyaku. Intervene as proposed by the curators, or contact me if you would like to coordinate a collaboration. All help and assistance is welcomed. A bonfire will be going all day.  Dress for the outdoors.  The interior gallery spaces will also be open with events and performances throughout the day and to offer a reprise from the outdoor elements. Join me on facebook if you would like updates on this event. (Barbara Hashimoto)

A message from the curators
The exhibition 24HRS/25DAYS celebrates transformations, the work that all of us have yet to produce, and everything that is not yet known.  The exhibition includes individual works, performances, classes, dinners, as well as other exhibitions, and many forms to be developed. It is curated through careful scheduling, but is open to the public for intervention. 24HRS/25DAYS began at 11:59 pm November 16, 2012 and will be open for 24 hours a day running through 11:59 pm December 12, 2012. During this time, the exhibition will flux continuously between preparations and presentations, while individuals flux continuously as artist, audience, curator/ dramaturge/ press/ pure being/ etc. Audience may visit anytime to view and/or participate in the process of the exhibition. We will be documenting the show as it evolves and transforms, all of which will be represented in its own chapter in the 2013 catalogue that documents the activity at NEW CAPITAL (and activity networked to NEW CAPITAL) over the past 2 years. This is the closing celebration of NEW CAPITAL’s two year project of regular scheduled programming at the physical location, 3114 W. Carroll, Chicago, IL. 60612. (Ben Foch and Chelsea Culp)

More information on "THE JUNK MAIL EXPERIMENT"

photos by Barbara Hashimoto